Back in 2012 I decided to fulfill all my childhood dreams. One of these dreams was to restore a cockpit of a first generation jetliner such as the Comet, Caravelle or B707. I was able to secure the cockpit of a Caravelle III (F-BHRU ex Air France c/n 58). It took me 5000 hours and 4 years to bring the cockpit of the Caravelle to 100% working order in better than new condition. This was truly an achievement that makes me proud to this day. However, I could never let go on dreaming of a 707 simulator….both the Caravelle and 707 have a special place in my heart. The are both highly pleasing to the eye, so different in design and yet so elegant. So I kept flirting with the idea of acquiring a 707 cockpit section and use the skills and knowledge acquired during the restoration of the Caravelle. This however turned out to be a lot more difficult than I thought. While I kept my eyes open, I had acquired a Mirage VF fighter jet cockpit in January 2017. The project got finished successfully 2 years later but due to lack of interest I sold the fighter simulator it in May 2019. In June 2018 I started negotiations with the owner of N88ZL, a former Lufthansa Boeing 707 (D-ABUF). We got an agreement, and I was only able to secure a few panels and parts together with aircraft documentation. The project ended in a litigation between the owner and the FBO halting all kinds of dismantling works. As fantastic as it would have been to secure an aircraft that my father once flew, N88ZL retains little of its former owner “Lufthansa”. During its career as a VIP aircraft the cockpit was heavily modified from the rear cabin wall, navigators station (gone), pilot’s panels up to the F/E panels.
Thanks to Guy van Herbruggen, a true 707 lover owning the former SABENA Boeing 707 simulator I was able to get all panels of Lufthansa’s Boeing 707 D-ABUD making my dream of having a Lufthansa 707 possible.